Friday, August 30, 2013

Adding to UFO Pile

So, when exactly does a new project become a UFO?

Isn't the purpose to SUBTRACT from the UFO pile? I was on a roll and proud of the progress I had been making this year. Alas, I do believe that I have stalled out and I'm moving in the opposite direction.
I've started a new project..
Or two...

It all started with this box overflowing with 1.5" strips leftover from my Granny Square project which, no, is not finished. :)


I wanted to empty that box and this project called for 1.5" strips.

It doesn't get much easier than that and I think this is going to make a great scrap quilt.


I then thought I might cut a few extra strips for variety and before I knew it, I ended up with, yes, a 2nd box of 1.5" strips. :) This will make a great leader-ender project, although I do believe it defeats my original purpose.


Then I saw that Bonnie Hunter posted a Split 9-Patch for her leader-ender project this year


 and I was reminded that I had this box:


2.5" squares all ready and waiting to be stitched.

And my collection of 2.5" strips just happened to fit right in to that plan. :)


Our Fall just got really busy, really quickly, so with the exception of 2 baby quilts that MUST be made, I'm thinking that sewing will not be happening around here. I figure these little strips will be easy stitching when I can manage to find 2 minutes to sit behind the machine.

And did I stop there? Of course not. I saw this S'mores quilt and thought that would be the perfect way to trim my overflowing box of brown fabric. I just made this one block and it may very well be a very lonely block for a long time to come:


I'm thinking that I need to  stop thinking.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

New Quilt Project

I'm finishing the quilting on the Fishy Baby Quilt and now I've got another baby quilt to make! Seems that babies are arriving in herds lately! I kind of want to make something that matches their theme and they decorated the nursery in a Jungle-Safari theme. It's as cute as can be, but it's not baby-ish. In fact, I'm thinking it's just about the cutest nursery I've ever seen. The grandma told me it was more Ralph Lauren-ish. So in search of fabric I went. There are lots of very sweet jungle lines, but every one of them is baby-ish which is kind of the point of baby quilts, but that's not what I'm going for this time. So I searched some more and found this:

With one click, it was headed my way and now that it has arrived, I just look at it every day and think, "What in the world am I going to do with it?"

I love it and I do think it's just the ticket, but I often struggle with selecting patterns. I am thinking of something along the lines of a square in a square for the little focus animals. They are 3" square and I think that would make them a little more prominent.

Yes? No?  I'll just pull out coordinating fabrics as I decide on what I'm doing. I know I want to tone it down a bit with some earth tones. I do not want to make this harder than it has to be, but I'm hoping for a  classy-safari-baby quilt. :) Time is of the essence because we all know how fast babies grow!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Special K Cookies

I imagine many of y'all already have these in your recipe file. I've been making them for over 26 years and I've lost count how many time I have made them. They are just about our boy's favorite cookies although if asked, I'm thinking he would be hard pressed to name a definite favorite. We are a family of cookie lovers.


It doesn't get much easier than these. You can make a ton, or at least as many as you have counter space for:

In my tiny kitchen, I don't have a lot. 

Special K Cookies

1 C sugar
1 C light Karo Syrup
1 1/2 C Peanut Butter
1 tsp vanilla
6 C Special K

*Combine the sugar and Karo Syrup in a large pot. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add Peanut Butter. Mix well. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla. Stir in Special K, mixing until everything is combined well. Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper. Let sit for a few hours to set...or, if you're like DH, why wait?

Sunday, August 25, 2013

This Week...

*As I came in from choring one evening, I found this little fella trying out his new wings:

He flew a few feet and landed on the sidewalk. I laid an egg down beside him as a reference.


 Well, I didn't LAY the egg. I have chickens for that! :)

*I now have a Pinterest hover button on my blog thanks to Karen, over at Sew Many Ways, who posted a great tutorial. I don't get on Pinterest much because its too easy for me to lose track of time, but I really like the format and I like how easy it is to pin things when a button is available.

*Beginning to tie into some much neglected home improvement projects:

* While cleaning out and organizing a few things, I wanted to revert back to childhood and had an overwhelming urge to sit and play:

*Spent a lot of time behind this:

*Cooked dinner for my MIL and FIL:

*Recipe to follow. :)

*Packing these up to send to our Marine:

*Recipe to follow...if I haven't already shared it. I'll go check. :)

*Wish I could find time to bind. :)


*Now will someone please come down here and help me get over my fear of applique?

* Our college girl posted something very wise this week that I wanted to share:

I don't normally  rant, and my apologies in advance, but I would like to clear something up right quick. Some folks seem to think that by remaining single, I am determined to deny myself happiness, and/or reap joy from "shooting guys down." I assure you, this is not the case. Last I checked, I was an extraordinarily blessed and happy person, who doesn't hide her heart because she is scared, but rather entrusts it to the One who loves her beyond comprehension. So long as I have the Lord in my life, a good horse in the pasture, my family, and the incredible people I am fortunate enough to call my friends, I see no NEED for a relationship at this point in my life, and you shouldn't feel that I need one either. Additionally... I happen to have a daddy who puts the vast majority of men to shame, so pardon me for being picky, but he set the bar pretty high. If you had any idea how much I love him, you wouldn't for a second doubt my ability to love. My standards are high. I don't find it my duty to lower them to accommodate anyone's ego.

End of rant.

*All honor and glory goes to the Lord for the way this child thinks. She just recently turned 20.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Buckaroo Bundle Re-Post

I posted this recipe back in 2008, but after I mentioned them recently, I had a lot of requests for the recipe and I guess my link wasn't working so your wish is my command, but I am re-purposing the old photos. :)

These are so good! They freeze well too, but they never make it that long around here. 24 Buckaroo Bundles lasted 24 hours although we did have our camp man, Jake, over for dinner and I sent some home with him since his wife and kids were away for a few days.

I used to make these for DH to pack into his saddle bags when he would take off horseback to check cattle and not be back for dinner. They were a great alternative to a smooshed sandwich! Not too long ago, I had to fix them for the crew because one of the day hands said that I was famous for my cooking. Hmmm...that could be good or bad. Turns out he was talking about these Buckaroo Bundles. I fixed them for a crew years ago once when I had to haul a handheld dinner to them on another part of the ranch. Apparently one of the fellas who had never helped us before, walked up to the tailgate and saw the bread and said, "Man! All we get is rolls?" He grabbed one and bit into it and told everyone that was the best thing he had ever eaten. That was back in Texas. Seems that story had made the rounds. And just to set the record straight, I did not only serve rolls. They had a couple different kinds of chips and sticks of cheese and stuffed jalapenos and baby carrots and 2 kinds of homemade cookies. They did not go hungry. Humph. :)

Buckaroo Bundles

3 loaves frozen bread dough
2 lbs lean ground beef
1 chopped onion
Pepper, garlic, seasoning salt to taste
5 potatoes, peeled and cubed (I dice these pretty small)
green chile (If you can get your hands on fresh green chile, I highly recommend it! It really does make all the                    difference)

*Thaw out bread dough (don't let it rise, just let it thaw out enough so that it can be rolled out)
*Brown the ground beef and onion, season to taste
*In the meantime, cook the potatoes (I fix mine in the Wok, and they look like this)


*When the potatoes are done, add them to the cooked ground beef.
*Toss in the green chile (amounts will depend on whether you like it with a bit of heat to it or not. Around                         here, we go through a  lot of green chile. Here's what it looks like when the potatoes and green                    chile are added:


*Roll out a loaf of dough and cut into 8 squares like this:


*Roll out each square. Place a couple good tablespoons of meat mixture in the middle and seal the dough around the meat. It will look like a baseball:


*Place on cookie sheet and bake at 350° for about 20-25 minutes, or until lightly browned.


I have made these hundreds of time in the past 25 years. They are great for picnics, potlucks, ropings, ranch rodeos, and stock shows. Enjoy!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

This Week...

I'm a huge fan of Dana's over at Old Red Barn and she has come up with an idea that I love. She said that often she doesn't have time to write out posts of things she wants to share so she is implementing a weekly bullet list. I can completely relate so I'm joining in on 'This Week'. I hope to post on Sundays, but that is subject to change. :) Thanks Dana!

*I have lots of fabric to cut up and I don't want to cut any of it.


  *Finally found a bit of time to work on the Fishy Baby Quilt:


*Wednesday ( or was it Thursday? ) was town day and that makes me grumpy. :)

* Our college girl came home for a few days. Yay!

*Every time the kids come home, they find a treat hiding among the pillows on their beds.

*It's a tradition.

*DH is working on a new project. What's he building?

*Time will tell. :)

*Finished up this project:

*Discovered a new favorite treat:

* This stuff is out of this world good. It's incredibly rich and all you need is one spoonful to satisfy a chocolate craving.

*Praying for rain:


* Ranch Rodeo this weekend, but we only went in on Friday night. Spent lots of years hauling to ranch rodeos to participate. Spectating is not as much fun.


*DH and our girl went to town on Saturday morning for the ranch horse show.

*I stayed home and cooked up 24 buckaroo bundles .


* 24 hours later there were none left.

*Our drinking glasses are mason jars. Just discovered these plastic insulated ones that we love:

*UFC fights on Saturday night! Yes, we are huge fans! Great card last night!


Friday, August 16, 2013

Hitting the Fabric Jackpot

On Monday I went to Lubbock with my in-laws. My FIL had a doctor's appointment and I went along to help drive. It's a 5 hr trip one way for them. My MIL and I had an ulterior motive too. The quilt shop in Lubbock was closing down. I was there in May with Marquita and Lora and we were told the sad news. The owner is retiring and they were beginning to liquidate in June. So we just had to stick our noses inside. I should have taken pictures, but I was a little overwhelmed. Everything was 75% off, and the place was packed. It was comical to watch, but it didn't take long for us to join the insanity. I was looking for a backing, but didn't have any luck, but let's just say I did not go home empty handed. However, I did leave with only one sack. And I didn't even fill it up.  My desire to round out my stash of 'kind of' reproduction prints has been achieved. That doesn't look like 22 yds of fabric, does it?

This store had lots of Thimbleberry kinds of fabrics. Perfect for adding to my Granny Square blocks and a few other projects that are waiting in the wings.

I have some odds and ends thrown in, but I just could not get over that price. Apparently I wasn't the only one. One lady had 5 kitchen sized trash bags stacked up with cut fabric stuffed inside and they were still cutting. And another lady spent $600, but said she had $1000 to spend so she went back for $400 more. That's a lot of fabric at $2.72 / yd. Surely she was buying for an organization that made quilts for donation. What a great deal.

I felt for those poor ladies cutting. How many pairs of scissors do you think they wore out? :) My hands wouldn't even work the next day if I cut all day like that. They said they had donuts to keep them going. LOL

It was insane. One gentleman came in and sat patiently, waiting on his wife. I wonder what was going through his mind as he surveyed the onslaught.

As for me, I see lots of cutting in my future.


There are scrap quilts on the agenda. Well, as soon as I am released from cocklebur duty. :)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Waging War on Cockleburs

My weapon of choice:

My target:


Cockleburs. Lots and lots of cockleburs. Our mornings are spent traipsing through the pastures in search of this evil plant.
And we are thankful.
Thankful because the fact that we have cockleburs to spray means that we have had rain. The last time there were cockleburs to spray was 2010. They are an invasive, toxic weed, and the burs are a bear to remove when they get caught in tails and manes:


I'm slower than DH in covering the country because if you recall, I am deathly afraid of snakes and when you're picking your way through waist-high brush and weeds and mesquite, its impossible to see the ground. So I have to multitask:
Scan the terrain for cockleburs.
Spray said cocklebur.
Keep an eye on DH so that we can cover the pasture efficiently.
Fight the mesquite.
Pray with every step that I don't cross paths with a snake.

DH knows this country like the back of his hand. He knows exactly where these grow. They tend to grow around dirt tanks and in low areas, as well along the spillways where the water carries the seeds. I have to pay attention because I tend to see one and then another and before I know it, I look up and DH has disappeared.


On this particular morning, we spent 5 hours walking and spraying and thankfully the good Lord kept all snakes out from under my feet. DH just may find his sidekick running to the truck if she ever steps on one.

These bottles get awfully heavy. They hold 3 gallons of a version of 2,4 D, Grazon, a broad-leaf herbicide, and after carrying one for 5 hours, your arms are going to get quite a workout.

But it's hard to beat spending a gorgeous, cool morning working alongside DH and combing the pastures.


The desert wildflowers were in full bloom.


We've just had 2-4" of rain on the ranch this summer and it always amazes me how pretty this country gets with just a little bit of rain.

And it's always a treat to be greeted with a double rainbow when you finally turn the truck towards home:


I am also very thankful for a crockpot full of a delicious roast dinner when we return home because the thought of fixing dinner after  spraying cockleburs all morning was not very appealing. I told DH I was going to call this my cocklebur dinner. My crockpot's getting quite a workout.

And the war continues...

Monday, August 12, 2013

Granny's Glass Blocks

Last week we took a day trip to my in-laws' to help them install a shower:

   When I was not needed, I offered to help my MIL with odds and ends. They have a 2nd story that is a finished attic. All the grand kids used to sleep up there when we used to have big family Christmases. The stairs are hard for my MIL to maneuver now so I offered to haul things up and down. Some of the boxes held these glass blocks that she makes and sold at a few craft fairs. I have this one on our piano:


I don't think there will be any more craft fairs so I thought I would post some of the different ones she had here and see if anyone was interested.


She is asking $35 plus shipping. I don't know what shipping will be, but if anyone is interested, I'll figure it out.

                                                                            Calf Roper:


                                                                                Barrel Racer:


                                                                            Bare Back:


                                                                        Bull Rider:

                                                                       Saddle Bronc:




Think Christmas! :)
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